Can I sue the Judge?


Judges cannot be sued for anything they do in the course of their judicial function. Even if a judge were to deal with your case in the most appalling conceivable way, you would not be able to sue him. The same goes for the other members of the tribunal.

If something has gone wrong with your case you can appeal or complain. If you are even thinking about suing the judge, you have almost certainly lost the plot. The best thing would be to have a cup of tea and sit down until the the feeling goes away.

34 Replies to “Can I sue the Judge?”

  1. Ha! Thank you for that. Though I often have to advise people who tell me, “It’s Discrimination!” “It’s Harassment!” “It’s Victimisation!” “It’s a breach of my Human Rights!” when it is none of these things, and I do so quietly, in detail, with sympathy. If I say, “Have a nice cup of tea and sit down until the feeling goes away,” that merely gives them another target for their ire. Though, just once, “Go away and stop wasting my time” had the desired effect.

  2. That’s a fair point.

    When advising individual clients a balance needs to be struck. One must be clear, without being rude or insensitive. And saying “You have lost the plot. Go away.” would be both rude and insensitive. It wouldn’t even be clear, since the message would get lost in the upset.

    Being polite and sensitive to the point that the client doesn’t understand your advice is equally bad.

    On this site, we’re talking in general terms, rather than about anyone’s individual case. So I hope posts like this are direct and clear, rather than rude.

    Of course, even when dealing with individual clients there are rare times when “Go away and stop wasting my time” is the only sensible response. But only after polite and sensitive has failed to be clear.

  3. Snoopy has a sensible take on a parallel temptation:

    “Sometimes when I get up in the morning, I feel very peculiar. I feel like I’ve just got to bite a cat! I feel like if I don’t bite a cat before sundown, I’ll go crazy! But then I just take a deep breath and forget about it. That’s what is known as real maturity.”

    1. I’m not sure most people would identify taking a deep breath and forgetting about being swindled as real maturity. Most would associate it with lacking backbone. If a legal public servant tries it on with you you are not only within your rights, but also I would say it’s your duty, to make a noise about it. Once they realize that their job is in jeopardy they’ll soon toe the line.

  4. Wow, no liberal progressionists here i see. As though to say… judges are above being held accountable and you thinking they should means you have lost the plot. Nice one.

    why shouldnt they be held as accountable as a politician? Do you not see an inherent conflict of interest in this generosity you afford judges? im not saying sued precisley, but they should be taken to task to ascertain evidence of malpractice that could lead to things such a reprimand right through to suspension or dismissal- an absence of such a structure allows them to be arrogant in their actions, safe in the knowledge that “they cant be sued” – which almost inevitably will produce malpractice. If you guys are lawyers or such you seem to have an element of malaise and lack of willingness to do anything about it, or maybe you just agree with the rule. The masses in the real world would likely not be so patronising in there explanation of this power-biased law to those who might be a victim of the way a trial was carried out. There is a reason why judges have a reputation for arrogance. Well this new piece of information goes a long way to explaining why. Maybe i should now go and have a cup of tea. Then again I could pass this thread to the Amnesty website and see if they agree with you or the potential victims.

  5. This blog is intended to provide very practical advice about how to go about getting useful results out of employment tribunal litigation.

    We don’t think judges are above being held accountable. We don’t think they always get the answer right, and we don’t even think that they are invariably decent human beings doing their fallible best. Some judges do sometimes behave badly – sometimes even cynically – in their judicial capacity. It’s right that they should be held accountable when they do.

    But the sensible way of doing that is to use the complaints procedure. It won’t necessarily get you anywhere – and part of the reason for that is indeed that there is an inherent bias in the system in favour of established authority. But it’s a better bet than trying to sue the judge, which won’t work at all. We advise against that for much the same reasons we’d advise, if asked, against banging your head against a brick wall.

    1. “It won’t necessarily get you anywhere – and part of the reason for that is indeed that there is an inherent bias in the system in favour of established authority” — You mean like a defendants countless lawyers over a claimants couple of witnesses? Or maybe the price tag of said lawyer? Hey, you just admitted to a bias in the system in favour of established authority, I’m just going further and explaining that no doubt there is a bias in the system that’s in favour of money too.

    2. Have you ever personally used the systems ‘complaints’ system? It is an insult to basic human intelligence and simply part of the corruption that is UK Ltd and the Mafia Masonics that control it all. Wake up and grow up. If your problem is ignorance, get educated before making statements you clearly know nothing about; If you’re part of the system and the problem stop trying to fool people who know better. You will be disappointed to learn not everyone is a gullible idiot.

    3. Naomi,
      Your post made me smile, you are so right in what you say and your advice is indeed very practical, thank you.

      I have just returned as the claimant in a case heard at an employment tribunal at Bristol Civil Court where my experience of the legal system, and the judge in particular, has been extremely traumatic. I have a mental health condition and I genuinely believed I would be supported to get a fair hearing. This didn’t happen, the judge had decided in favour of my employer on day one. He didn’t listen to what I had to say nor did he show any interest in wanting to listen. He was aggressive and very critical of me as I tried to cope with the mountain of paperwork that was in front of me on the witness stand. I broke down several times because of the extreme stress I was experiencing and the court session had to be adjourned. Judges do act with impunity and that is something that doesn’t sit well when every other profession is, as others have pointed out, held to account for its members’ actions. Following my ordeal, I have decided I will campaign to try and raise awareness of how inherently unfair elements of the legal process are and why changes are long overdue. Much is made of how we will be judged by future generations and my wish is that this century will be seen as one that at least tried to make the legal process fair and accessible to all.

  6. Some Judges are very corrupt and the system is very unjust. Institutions like the Employment Tribunal and the Employment Appeal Tribunal should not exist as they are institutions that encourages discrimination and victimisation. Cases are considered based on colour not on evidence of facts. The Ministry of Justice shouldtake Judges misconduct very serious as they are now promoting injustice. The justice system is corrupt.

  7. TO be honest I agree with the comments made above. They should make it law that Judges can be sued personally when they have been negligent. Their codes should be available on the public domain.

    I would like to see Recorders in our employment tribunals & Court System so evidence can be recalled when a judge has behaved in breach of the judical codes, if there are such things. The appeal system is a costly exercise so its only really made for the rich. I have found that solicitors can run rings around judges mainly through sweet talking and do this even if they breach there own codes of practice. I have witnessed this several times. There are so many flaws in our legal system you wont believe it. ” DISCLSOURE ” is one of the biggest flaws. I dont think the courts take “PERJURY” seriously… if they did it would save BILLIONS spent on our Legal System.

    Human Rights does not apply in the Tribunal System they can do as they please and from my experience I think the tribunal should look at improving this. There is an overload of cases and not enough judges and this does not surprise me to be honest.

  8. I feel that with employment tribunals there are a lot of bad judges and something needs to be done. These lawyers who regularly use the same courts have built up relationships with these judges and this needs to be looked into. THey say that you can represent yourself but yet with full knowledge that you dont have legal experience still get penalised. I think it is better to March down the street with banners, loud audios and a large group of people outside the building of the accused than end up going to a tribunal whereby you are wasting your time with the judges and then being sued money.

  9. I’m not so concerned about suing as making Judges face criminal action if they have committed perjury and fraud.

    Why on earth should they be exempt?

    “These lawyers who regularly use the same courts have built up relationships with these judges and this needs to be looked into.” olfa

    Partners in Employment ‘firms’ regularly visit the ET user meeting

    My situation was incredibly blatant as I cornered the Judge into reveiwing the case after time. There she was forced to do the Wright thing and acknowledge that I had been charged £13,500 in a countérclaim for something that wasn’t claimed or presented in court

    The EAT dismissed my after time claim – at registrar level. It’s difficult to do anything when the question you ask is ignored and points you make are preceded by “It appears” – the lepers bell of the obtuse

    I’m currently using the OJC to try to get the Wright thing done to the woman concerned

  10. There is a part of me that can’t quite fathom that the ET is as corrupt as I believe it to be given my experience of it, and I wonder if anyone else has an alternative explanation to offer on what happened to me. The following is just one example of behaviour that I see as being blantantly prejudiced in the respondent’s favour, but I am absolutely open to alternative explanations.

    I pursued a claim of unfair dismissal against my former employer. A PHR by telephone was ordered to take place by telephone. I requested a number of documents from my former employer. He refused to supply them. I appealed to the ET to help me obtain them, but was told in writing that “matters of disclosure” could be “dealt with after the Pre-hearing review if appropriate”. I called the ET for an explanation and was told that the PHR was just to determine if I had a case in law (I was under the threshold for minimum service but my claim was on Health & Safety grounds). At the PHR, however, it quickly became apparent that this was not the case and a prohibitive deposit was imposed on the grounds of.,..wait for it…lack of evidence. I genuninely can’t fathom this. Can anyone give me an explanation for this that doesn’t suppose bias towards the respondent, or worse?

  11. It is, in my experience a case, of who you know in these situations

    If your employer knows ( or knew -) a solicitor who knows the Judge you are snookered

    Complaints — even if they are watertight — are ultimately dealt with by David Latham head of the ET.

    Take a look at some of his work online. It’s all about what a great job the ET do and how they deserve more money ( addressed to Civil Servants )

    This is transparently unfair. He has a vested interest in seeing no wrongdoing.

    As I mentioned I brought a case for breach of contract ( I was borderline minimum wage )

    I ended up being charged £13,500 in a counterclaim ( I say that that is impossible ) plus they tried to claim another £10k in court for costs ( which they threatened to settle for £5k outside court)

    Following my case the Brighton ET became part of the Croydon district and the woman concerned was moved on to Havant ( the pun of havant a clue sprung to mind )

    Unfortunately unless you can persuade the ET to take you to court – you will never get anywhere legally

    1. I am sorry repeating myself and boring you with my problems!!!

      You are absolutely right! We had a racist judge who just saw 2 black girls in court an nothing else. What are you supposed to do about that?
      Some of these judges have a bad attitude because they think they are superior and even when they make massive mistakes they are never held accountable. They should be just like everyone else.

  12. In the UK, judges are encouraged in their malpractise in exactly the way that the poster ‘Liberal’ states above. Rather than challenge them,. Barristers toady up to them, because they have in mind the next case they will hear before them and it is clear that the judges take very personally their cherished beliefs and opinions being questioned. If a complaint is made against a judge through the correct channels, it has a 0.001% chance of being upheld. They are moreover, very often, members of masonic lodges, which one might guess skews their choices if for example, a brother mason comes before them. They now have to state that they are masons – so far in the UK it’s around 78%. If someone is unlucky enough to come before a judge who is biased or is having a bad day, it can ruin the rest of their lives. There are conditions on appeal – timing, financing, representation, decisions as to whether the case is appealable – which deter many from launching an appeal. There is a ruling in British law which states implicitly that one judge will not gainsay a brother judge – because of the nuance of being there on the day, and not having been party to that in drawing/making an impression during the original hearing.

    Ultimately they have immunity. And they abuse it freely. The human cost is immense.

  13. The post by ‘liberal’ was indeed very informative

    Whether local solicitors acting as judges, with local barristers representing local law firms who the Tribunal know is the best solution to employment disputes, I don’t know for sure.

    Considering the amount of money spent on Employment Tribunals I do think that some alternatives should be looked into.

  14. I would like to say from my experience Employment Judges are disgracefully corrupt and I am of the opinion money changes hands so rich employers can ‘buy’ the ruling they want.

    I also know that the appeal tribunal is a waste of time and is also run by the same corrupt scum,I have applied for judgements and also for documents that should for no credible reason be rejected and yet they have,also barristers and solicitors(trained liars) will use any tactic to annoy and wind people up in court..they are also scum.

    There is only one way to deal with people who do things to you and it is a way which if you get caught would get you into criminal charges,this is the only action I think these solicitors and judges would stand up and pay attention to.

  15. During the history of law you are able to see how law has evolved and why it changed.

    Once the preserve of scholars its currency has been devalued by mass education and of course the World Wide Web.

    If you have a science degree ( or even A levels ) you very likely understand logic and how to source employment cases from Google.

    If you, a non legally ‘qualified’ person represent a claimant or defendant in the ET you can charge upto £30 per hour. A solicitor / barrister charges 7 to 10 times that.

    Is there any difference? Not really in the quality of work ( not 7 to 10 times, that is for certain ) The big difference lies in the fact that you are taking on an extremely powerful trade union who are not going to let an interloper correct them on non sequiturs and clumsy language.

    The judge is an employment solicitor, the solicitor and barrister are also part of this union.

    I read Naomi and Michael’s book which, imo, is excellent.

    It does, however, not deal with the fact that if you take on this crowd in their supposed ‘specialist subject’ – which truth be told isn’t that difficult – you will struggle against bias.

    Rather like when convayencing, which is mainly common sense, was removed as a task that must be done by a solicitor – if you do not remember this ‘law professionals’ fought tooth and nail to preserve their overpaid, self interests – so a healthy part of employment tribunals business is keeping the abundance of solicitors in lucrative work.

    As mentioned earlier I have read Michael and Naomi’s book. The advice is clear and offers a common sense approach.

    Sadly though it will not put you on anything like a level playing field with professional solicitors.

    I do not wish to taint this discussion with cynicism but you really need to ‘wake up and smell the coffee’ if you think that all that matters is a well presented, logical argument citing applicable laws.

    As in many other walks of life, Employment Tribunal’s are a lot about who you know.

    And you don’t know the judge, but a > £200 p/h solicitor does.

  16. If perjury is one of the most serious offences (due to it’s obvious complete and utter disregard / disrespect of the law), then a flawed judge who completely and utterly abuses his position of power within the system MUST be answerable for that – to the law, and MUST be subjected to the most severe penalties.

    If not, then the law isn’t just ‘an ass’, but a complete and utter abuse of democracy, in place simply to oppose democracy in order to ensure that democracy does not achieve it’s aim of equity for all.

    It is there simply to ensure that the so-called ‘elite’ stay ‘elite’.

    I have seen magistrates get fined for drunk-driving (instead of usual automatic bans), based on ‘mitigating circumstances’ and ‘service to the community’, when Joe Bloggs can not dare to try to submit mitigating circumstances for fear of appearing arrogant.

    Laws in the UK can’t be described as ‘corrupt’, because the law is the law – it is what has been intended. When the legal system itself is corrupt – everything coming out of that system is immoral.
    What we have here is a corrupt system of law – most laws passed by it being immoral and completely undemocratic.

    (Remember; that following a war – the ‘truth’ of what happened during that war is dictated by the winner of that war – false or not).

  17. Well we definitely had an arrogant ass for a judge and I told him so!!
    His lack of knowledge through not bothering to read the paperwork provided to him 3 months before the hearing in an intestacy case has now put a once debt free estate into chaos and insolvency and I will not let him get away with it. I don’t care who he is. He has allowed over over £20,000 to be wasted on our late mother’s estate.

  18. I have just happened upon this thread whilst looking for justification for a Judge to allow a solicitor to disobey rules. Quick summary of my case. Sacked after 22 years unblemished service after telling company I had developed a disability. Proof in evidence that from the moment I told them plans were put in place and carried out 3 months later. Went to a preliminary hearing to prove said disability. The Judge after I informed him that the solicitor not only withheld evidence but also broke 3 court orders and lied directly to the court just waved them away as if it was a common occurrence. Would not listen to the fact that a medical witness statement was totally bias containing statements that weren’t even true. Judged the case without even reading my witness statement after the solicitor made no objection to said statement. This is completely obviously a case of negligence and malpractice by the Judges yet reading this thread I have no course of action against this bias regime. To say I can complain is somewhat naive as I liken the complaints to complaining to a mother about her children. You may be right and the mother knows this but will take little or no action. To say take it to an appeal in my case would be financially crippling as I do not have the funds to do this so the respondent wins and I have to foot the bill. So now I know that there is no way I can win my case for unfair dismissal with the courts so bias. You should be able to make the Judges accountable if they make mistakes or in my case blatantly ignore court directives. To afford anyone in any job roll exemption from prosecution will only lead to abuse.

      1. I lost my job because of ill-health. I took my ex-employer to court on a NMW claim and won, but it was no-win/no-fee so the solicitor took his 35% cut before I got the money. Then there were other costs, Barrister etc. which ate into the award. At this time I was unemployable due to ill-health so was on benefits, they stopped as soon as the award was made so I had to use money from the award to pay the rent. Then my ex-employer appealed, so I had more legal costs; they won the appeal and it was referred back to the original Judge for clarification. By now I had run out of money, Judge reversed original decision so I now have to pay the money back…

    1. Finding this thread makes me feel so much better. I thought I was the only one raging against the system. I took my employer to an ET. I consulted a solicitor who said it was obvious I had a clear case, but would probably lose. My union refused to support me as although I had a clear case, it would cost them money to represent me and it wasn’t worth it. So I went ahead on my own anyway & guess what I lost. How can this be right? To have a clear case, but to lose on the grounds I wasn’t clever enough to play the system. I trusted the judge to read the evidence they provided & more importantly didn’t provide. You can only appeal on grounds of law but not that the Judge just completely got it wrong!

  19. For a long while the police force had considered itself above the law, where investigations were only carried out internally. The police investigating themselves and always coming up squeaky clean but that changed after persistent public pressure and campaigns. The same should have happened with judges a long time ago. Still not too late to do. There are numbers of things that can be put in place to eliminate, or at the least decrease the opportunity’s available to corrupted judges e.g audio recording of all hearings, consideration of video recording hearings, independent lay person led investigatory committee/forum, peer reviews (although again objectivity becomes an issue) etc

  20. So if a Judge took out a gun and shot a litigant, he couldn’t be sued ?
    Of course he could, so then he can be sued if he breaks the law in any other way, no man is above the law.
    The status quo might not allow you to sue a Judge but he is not above the law any more than you or I

  21. I am scratching my head to Abigail’s comment. Why should Judges be allowed to do whatever they wish to do but the public can’t do anything about it. So basically what she is saying a Judge can abuse in any shape and form and the public should take it. Unless you have been in the situation where a Judge thinks his powers allow him to treat people any way he wishes you should take your advice and shove it where the sun don’t shine. I have just been through a lengthy 5 year court case where it was very apparent that there was tax fraud and the Judge delivered his judgement against me when my case was water tight and evident. Now I will need to appeal and go through it all over again when it could have been over now.

  22. I have a taped telephone Hearing demonstrating judicial bias against mental health disability. I asked for adjustment before hearing by e-mail – ability to tape – because judge was breaching an existing adjustment by calling for hearing with just 2 days notice and I had no support for this. Judge wrote several months later to say he’d only just been handed my request to tape and that it is UNLAWFUL to tape the ET Hearing!!!

  23. I am surprised that so many people equate the passing of an employment law certificate with the person in question being an honest individual. I would at best say that there zero correlation between the two.

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